Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

Creative groomed dog. Paul Nathan
Photographer Paul Nathan has captured some fantastically groomed dogs in his new book 'Groomed.'

Going to the groomer is part of every dog's life, and it doesn't usually venture out of the realm of the routine.

But some particularly artistic animal enthusiasts have taken their pets' visits to the beauty salon to the next level: Creative grooming.

The fad, which includes decorating and even dyeing dogs' fur, has picked up in popularity in recent years, and fashion photographer Paul Nathan captures some stunning examples in his new book "Groomed."

Every side of the dog is decked out in different colors. Paul Nathan

"I wanted to capture beautiful portraits of incredibly groomed dogs," he told TODAY.com of his photos of dramatically dressed-up canines. "In doing so, I wanted to see how much of the dog's personality shined through in relation to the groomer's craft."

A "creative groomed" dog is on a completely different level than a regularly-groomed one: a dog's fur is cut, prepped, and dyed to turn the tail-wagger into a walking piece of art. 

Dogs can have styles that include multiple colors. Paul Nathan

It took Nathan only six months to gather enough content for the book, thanks to the work he did on his last book, "Couture Dogs of New York," in which he photographed people that dressed their dogs in handmade couture outfits and have their pets compete in fashion shows. Through their Facebook feeds, he then discovered the concept of creative grooming and was instantly fascinated.

"I would say creative grooming is about taking grooming in the opposite direction of the practical maintenance of dog care," he said of the project. "It is about creating an extremely fantastical, unique and imaginative artwork with the dog as the canvas, using non-toxic, washable dyes, masterful clipping and sometimes accessories."

Though he works as a fashion photographer, Nathan says he enjoys photographing dogs just as much as people. "Dogs always look great, and I often feel there is a purity and childlike innocence about them," he said.

And though he doesn't have another book on dogs slated for the future, that could change depending on what inspires him. "Generally if I come across something that sparks my interest," he said, "I know there is probably something deeper I want to explore."

  • Slideshow Photos

    Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

    Paul Nathan captures beautiful portraits of pets groomed and dyed in colorful and whimsical ways.

  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative -

    Some particularly artistic animal enthusiasts have taken their pets' visits to the beauty salon to the next level: Creative grooming.

    The fad, which includes decorating and even dyeing dogs' fur, has picked up in popularity in recent years, and fashion photographer Paul Nathan captures some stunning examples in his new book, "Groomed."

    Paul Nathan Www.paulnathanstudio
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Stylin' pooch -

    "I wanted to capture beautiful portraits of incredibly groomed dogs," Paul Nathan told TODAY.com regarding his photos of dramatically dressed-up canines. "In doing so, I wanted to see how much of the dog's personality shined through in relation to the groomer's craft."

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Pretty puppy -

    A "creatively groomed" dog is on a completely different level than a regularly groomed one: A dog's fur is cut, prepped, and dyed to turn the tail-wagger into a walking piece of art.

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Cat-dog -

    It took Nathan only six months to gather enough content for the book, thanks to the work he did on his last book, "Couture Dogs of New York," in which he photographed people who dress their dogs in handmade couture outfits and have their pets compete in fashion shows. Through their Facebook feeds, he then discovered the concept of creative grooming and was instantly fascinated.

    Paul Nathan Www.paulnathanstudio
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

    of

    Googly eyes -

    "I would say creative grooming is about taking grooming in the opposite direction of the practical maintenance of dog care," Paul Nathan said of his project.

    Paul Nathan Www.paulnathanstudio
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

    of

    Calvin and kitty -

    "It is about creating an extremely fantastical, unique and imaginative artwork with the dog as the canvas, using non-toxic, washable dyes, masterful clipping and sometimes accessories."

    Paul Nathan Www.paulnathanstudio
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

    of

    Colorful canine -

    Though he works as a fashion photographer, Paul Nathan says he enjoys photographing dogs just as much as people.

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Jester poodle -

    "Dogs always look great, and I often feel there is a purity and childlike innocence about them," Paul Nathan said.

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Leopard dog -

    The grooming and styles can include anything.

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Tropical pups -

    Some of the styles can even be themed around locations, like a tropical isle.

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Sea monster -

    Though he doesn't have another book on dogs slated for the future, Paul Nathan said that could change depending on what inspires him.

    Paul Nathan
  • Four-legged art: Dog grooming gets creative in wildly colorful photos

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    Disney lover -

    "Generally if I come across something that sparks my interest," Paul Nathan said, "I know there is probably something deeper I want to explore.""

    Paul Nathan
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